Many thanks to everyone who responded to my request for reading recommendations - I've just made my 185th Amazon purchase (!) and now have far more than a week's worth of holiday reading winging it's way to me from their Marston Gate warehouse.
A couple of comments referenced the pile of books I'd used to illustrate the post - whilst it does contain a few of my favourites, it was more of a reflection of the volumes that were nearest to hand (I have an annoying habit of evangelically forcing my most cherished books onto my friends who are then forced to use them as door stops / paperweights and smile politely whenever I inquire as to how they are enjoying them).
A while back I came across 22books - a modest little site "dedicated to the creating, sharing, and viewing of book lists". Created by James Avery, initially to detail all 22 of the late Kurt Vonnegut's published books (hence the name), the site is a little light on functionality at present, offering commenting and embedding and not a whole lot else. That said, I'm increasingly favouring single-function sites (e.g. Flickr for photos, Twitter for status updates) over the everything-but-the-kitchen sink, all-your-base-are-belong-to-us behemoth that is Facebook.
Anyway, rather than construct my list of favourite novels using the more obvious choice of Amazon's Listmania, I thought I'd give 22books a whirl. Unfortunately I can't get their embed code to work with Blogger so I've cut-and-pasted the list below (don't worry James - I've left your Amazon affiliate code in tact :) You can view the list in situ here.
22 of my favourite novels:
Sunday, March 30, 2008
1. The Secret History by Donna Tartt
2. Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell
3. Fugitive Pieces by Anne Michaels
4. Air & Fire by Rupert Thomson
5. Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close by Jonathan Safran Foer
6. The Insult by Rupert Thomson
7. Atonement by Ian McEwan
8. Everything Is Illuminated by Jonathan Safran Foer
9. The Book of Revelation by Rupert Thomson
10. The Diving Bell and the Butterfly by Jean-Dominique Bauby
11. Enduring Love by Ian McEwan
12. The Road by Cormac McCarthy
13. Ghostwritten by David Mitchell
14. Number9Dream by David Mitchell
15. Disgrace by J. M. Coetzee
16. Life of Pi by Yann Martel
17. Captain Corelli's Mandolin by Louis de Bernieres
18. Saturday by Ian McEwan
19. Veronika Decides to Die by Paulo Coelho
20. The Child in Time by Ian McEwan
21. The Five Gates of Hell by Rupert Thomson
22. Black Out by John Lawton